10 Great Podcasts for Government Employees

I love podcasts.

Podcasts are a great way to get smarter while you’re doing the dishes, working out, or on your morning commute (unless you’re bike commuting in traffic, in which case I can’t recommend using headphones).

Some of these will make you better at your job. Some will inform you about current events and policy. Some are just fascinatingly educational.

All but one of these are broadcasting regularly as of right now – I’ve linked to the individual sites, but you should also be able to find them in your favorite podcasting app.

Am I missing any of your favorites? Let me know in the comments!


GovLoop’s own Chris Dorobek sits down with government insiders to get their insight on the week’s most important stories and to take a look forward at the topics that are currently shaping government. He covers everything from cyber policies to leadership, with a focus on helping government do its job better.

Listen in.

Gov Innovator

Broadcasting since 2012, the Gov Innovator podcast is “based on a belief that public management and leadership are critical to addressing our nation’s important challenges at the federal, state and local levels.” Host Andy Feldman interviews public sector experts to draw out insights on everything from public management to budgeting.

Find it here.

This Week In Law

Attorneys Denise Howell and Sarah Pearson bring on guests to discuss the legal implications of current events. It’s lively and interesting, and even if your role doesn’t involve keeping up to date on the law, you’re still likely to learn something interesting.

They publish weekly, and this last week’s episode was their 300th!

Find it here.

The CSIS Podcast

Hosted by Colm Quinn, The CSIS Podcast is a look at the week’s news in foreign policy through the eyes of the experts at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). Each episode runs on the short side – about 15-20 minutes – so it’s a great way to get a focused look at foreign policy on the go.

Listen here.


Ever wondered what it would be like to be a UN Official, a musician in New Orleans, or Stephen Colbert? David Plotz and Adam Davidson talk to all these people and more in Slate’s Working podcast – it’s a fascinating look into what other people do all day.

Find it here.

TED Radio Hour

From NPR, the TED Radio Hour is a curated selection of some of the best TED talks. For each episode, host Guy Raz weaves snippets and insights from the talks together around a central theme, then interviews some of the TED experts in order to get more in depth.

Check it out.

Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me

Also from NPR, Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me is a hilarious way to catch up on the week’s news. Listening to host Peter Sagal and a panel of comedians riff on the news has long been one of my favorite ways to spend a Saturday morning.

Listen here.

60-Second Science

Even if you only have a minute, you can still learn something new. Scientific American’s 60-Second Science podcast provides snippets of breaking research in just about a minute.

Find it here.

Stuff You Missed In History Class

Hosted by Tracy V. Wilson and Holley Frey, Stuff You Missed In History Class has been broadcasting since 2008. It covers everything from the 1916 shark attacks that inspired Jaws to a culinary history of spam.

Check it out.

ARCHIVED: Excellence in Government

Although Government Executive’s Excellence in Government podcast hasn’t had a new episode since April 2014, there’s still some good stuff in the archives. Hosted by Mark Micheli, the podcast “features interviews with public and private sector thought leaders to offer rising feds tips for tackling government’s most pressing management challenges.”

Find it here.

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Russell Irving

Jessie, thank you for a great reminder as to the power (and joy) of podcasting. I have personally heard a number of these. Allow me to add, Learn Out Loud directory of podcasts. It is a treasure trove of free mp3 podcasts.

Justin Dimmick

Try Backstory for American history based on themes relevant today and Intelligence^2 for even-handed debates over a broad assortment of topics. At the very least they provide great conversation starters.